Plans by Heathrow to build a third runway to the south west of the existing runways have met with dismay by those who would have their homes demolished, and their local area ruined. The new southern runway, already dubbed “R3S”, is regarded as both cheaper and more attractive than the northern option. Simon Calder says it would be used exclusively by smaller jets – the Airbus A320 and Boeing 737 series – which are somewhat less noisy than wide-bodied aircraft. Also that the eastern end of the new runway would be located about a mile further west than the existing two runways. Arriving and departing aircraft would therefore be significantly higher when flying over the capital. Heathrow apparently also says there would be no need for a 6th terminal, as the runway could be accessed from Terminal 4 (Skyteam alliance) and Terminal 5 (BA). Much of the land on which the new runway would be built is currently covered by airport-related buildings, including cargo warehouses and car parks. Simon Calder thinks these could be re-located “with little fuss”. But the western end would encroach on Stanwell Moor, a post-war development less than a mile from Terminal 5, where residents have not been consulted in any way on the proposals.
Heathrow’s latest plan for third runway would be ‘plane crazy’ for one village
Simon Calder meets the people who could soon have jets landing on their doorsteps
When the Concorde used to fly over Stanwell Moor it set off car alarms. Now, after a decade of relative quiet, long-suffering residents of the Surrey village under Heathrow’s flightpath face having a runway outside their front doors.
They reacted with a mixture of indignation and resignation to the news that their village is the latest “silver bullet” solution to Britain’s aviation woes. The owners of Heathrow are understood to have abandoned plans for a third runway north of the present airport perimeter – and instead propose to build it to the south, encroaching on a village of 1,300 inhabitants.
The new southern runway, already dubbed “R3S”, is regarded as both cheaper and more attractive than the northern option. It would be used exclusively by smaller jets – the Airbus A320 and Boeing 737 series – which are quieter than wide-bodied aircraft.
In addition, the eastern end would be located about a mile further from London than the existing two runways. Arriving and departing aircraft would therefore be significantly higher when flying over the capital.
The planned location could be constructed with no need for a sixth terminal. It would offer direct access from British Airways’ exclusive hub, Terminal 5, and Terminal 4 – home to Air France, KLM and the rest of the Skyteam alliance.
Much of the land needed for the runway is occupied by airport-related buildings, including a cargo village and car parks, which could be re-located with little fuss. But the western end would encroach on Stanwell Moor, a post-war development less than a mile from Terminal 5.
Villagers have not been consulted on the plans. Aslam Andanjee, 58, who owns Stanwell Moor Post Office, said: “It’s a surprise to me. We’ve never been mentioned before.”
“Bloody hell – are they really?” exclaimed Robert Mandry when presented with a sketched diagram of the proposed third runway. The 69-year-old retired compositor has lived in Stanwell Moor for 10 years, and conceded that noise has abated during that decade. He speculated that residents could be persuaded to move with sufficiently generous offers: “Our house is worth £250,000. If they offer us £350,000 I expect we’ll leave.”
Then he left to alert his partner, Rosemary Brown, who has lived in Stanwell Moor for 40 years. “She won’t half be upset when I tell her,” he said.
LHR Airports Ltd, which owns Heathrow, has declined to confirm or deny the reports.
The company will submit its proposals for expansion to the Davies Commission, which is evaluating solutions for the airport capacity crunch in South-East England, before 19 July.
HACAN ClearSkies, which opposes expansion at Heathrow, said the new runway could increase flights by 46 per cent. Its chair, John Stewart, said: “It is a clever plan which Heathrow hopes might neutralise opposition amongst some of the communities and local authorities which successfully opposed a new runway to the north of the airport.”
He added that the campaigners would oppose the proposals because a new runway would be “massively disturbing” to “vast swathes of people”.
But back in Stanwell Moor, Sri Haran – proprietor of the village shop, T5 Stores – gestured towards the airport and sighed: “There’s not a lot a village can do when they decide”.
Map showing location of terminals at Heathrow from http://www.heathrow-airport-guide.co.uk/directions.html
Heathrow planning new runway to the south-west in Stanwell Moor area
June 6, 2013 The Standard reports that Heathrow is planning a new runway south-west of the airport, in one of three options that the airport will submit to the Airports Commission. The south-west runway would destroy the village of Staines Moor, and might be just north of the two large reservoirs, the George VI and the Staines reservoir. The Standard believes that Heathrow is no longer seriously considering a northern runway, at Sipson. A south-west runway might mean the demolition of fewer properties unless Stanwell itself was destroyed. Heathrow knows it can only get another runway if it can persuade enough people that the noise burden from extra flights will not be significantly larger. Therefore the airport has been trying to hard to convince those under flight paths that there will be improvements. A new runway to the south-west would increase aircraft noise for Feltham, Twickenham, Ham, Richmond Park and Wimbledon Common – where there would be intense opposition. Daniel Moylan, the Mayor’s chief aviation adviser, said: “Even to discuss this is to add a new blight to the lives of thousands of Londoners. It is further proof Heathrow expansion is environmentally and politically impossible.” Click here to view full story…